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Home > Tools April 12th, 2011

Is There a Photoshop CS5.5? No, But There’s a Photoshop CS5.1

Big question out there with Adobe’s unveiling of Creative Suite 5.5 yesterday – is there a new version of Photoshop for CS 5.5?

We’ve already taken a close look at this with our extensive release review of all CS 5.5 products. But Photoshop is the most popular product of the suite, so the new functions here deserve special focus:

Check out the new Adobe Photoshop Touch SDK for CS5

Photoshop will in fact be getting a revision to CS5.1 while extending the creative process beyond the desktop by helping integrate tablet devices into creative workflows. The new Adobe Photoshop Touch SDK (Software Development Kit) allows developers to create companion apps that run on mobile platforms like the Apple iPad, Motorola Xoom, and RIM PlayBook… The SDK controls an internal scripting engine to perform directed actions within Photoshop CS5 – thus enabling cool new applications like color mixing and painting on tablet devices.

Adobe announced the 3 first mobile apps coming soon to show off these new features:

  • Adobe Color Lava – Pick colors and mix paints using an iPad and see your colors back in Photoshop on the desktop.
  • Adobe Eazel – Create paintings including watercolors using an iPad and easily transfer the paintings to Photoshop to integrate into other designs.
  • Adobe Nav – A remote console that lets you select and control Photoshop tools using the iPad as a new input surface, break apart and customize the PS toolbar, and browse and open PS files.

See how these new apps help capture artistic expression, creative inspiration, and on-the-fly ideas no matter where they happen (with Adobe’s Bryan O’Neil Hughes of Photoshop Content-Aware Fill fame):

… We’re going to have a few applications from Adobe that showcase some of this technology – the ability to mix colors, the ability to paint, the ability to drive Photo­shop’s interface and see open documents. These are just a couple of examples of what we’ll be able to do with our own apps and Photoshop – but what’s really exciting here, and what’s really the most powerful thing here, is what it means to our Software Development Kit, and the plumbing of Photoshop…

We’re opening up an entirely new set of doors in communicating with Photoshop. Photoshop will be able to talk to the applications, the applications and devices will be able to talk to Photoshop – and that’s really the most exciting thing about this update. If there’s one thing we’ve seen after 21 years, it’s that making Photoshop extensible is the key to establishing its success. That extensibility allows it to speak to all sorts of different formats, and now it will be able to speak to all sorts of different devices.

The good news is these new functions are coming to all current installs of Photoshop CS5, not just new purchases with CS 5.5. So, all versions of Photoshop CS5 will soon be getting a free update, whether or not you move up to CS5.5… (If you own an earlier release of Photoshop, Adobe offers discounted upgrade pricing to get to CS5.) The current release of Photoshop CS5 is technically 12.0.3 and soon Adobe will be issuing an update to 12.0.4 which provides this new functionality (“Enable Remote Connections”).


In the meantime there is free access to the SDK and prerelease software if you need it, or would like to build such an app, or would just like to find out more:

Download the Adobe Photoshop Touch SDK for CS5.1

For a bigger upgrade to Photoshop we’ll look to when CS6 is released.

See also:

Watch the new channel on Adobe TV, Introducing Photoshop Touch.

Read our launch guide for CS 5.5, and the differences between CS5 and CS5.5.

See a feature comparison between the last three releases: Photoshop CS5 vs. CS4 vs. CS3.

[UPDATE (May 3rd) – The free update to Photoshop 12.0.4 is now available!  In addition to the new Remote Connections capability for external interaction, this update also fixes liquify perform­ance, several application crashes, potential security vulnerabilities, and other top customer issues.]

[UPDATE (May 10th) – Adobe just announced the three new Photoshop Touch apps for tablets are out and now downloadable from the App Store.]

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  1. JMM

    Cool stuff… when will these new Photoshop mobile apps be out? TIA

    • Hi JMM, thanks for your question. From what Adobe says, these new PS companion apps are expected to be available around the same time that the CS5.5 release is, that is in early May.

    • Subject: Adobe Photoshop CS5 update available now.
      From: Adobe Systems Incorporated
      Date: Tue, May 10, 2011 11:10 am

      Dear Adobe Customer,

      Adobe is pleased to announce a free update to Adobe® Photoshop® CS5 software that gives you the ability to work directly with mobile and tablet applications as they become available for devices like the iPad*.

      In order to take advantage of this new connection to devices, install the latest update by choosing Help > Updates in Photoshop CS5 or Photoshop CS5 Extended software.

      Along with the update, Adobe is announcing three initial iPad companion apps to Photoshop CS5 that can be purchased separately from the Apple App Store†:

      Adobe Color Lava for Photoshop CS5
      Create custom colors and color themes on your iPad and instantly access them in Photoshop CS5.

      Adobe Eazel for Photoshop CS5
      Create beautiful paintings on your iPad and instantly access them in Photoshop CS5.

      Adobe Nav for Photoshop CS5
      Tap and swipe your iPad screen to activate Photoshop CS5 tools, browse open Photoshop documents, and much more.

      Adobe knows creativity and we’re helping your creativity go mobile. Take your inspiration to new heights, wherever you are.

      Best regards,

      The Adobe Photoshop Team

      * Photoshop CS5 (version 12.0.4 or later) and wireless Internet connection required. Mobile and tablet applications require a separate download and agreement to additional terms. Such applications may not be available in all countries or languages and may be subject to change or discontinuation without notice. Additional fees or subscription charges may apply.

      † Subject to Apple’s current requirements and approval.

  2. sagun

    Adobe Premiere Pro CS5.5

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